The Anomaly Pages



About one new species of bird is identified a year. Robert Ridgely, 52, and Lelis Navarrete, both ornithologists, were walking down an Andes mountain path in Ecuador during November 1997 as part of a bird-recording trip, when they heard an unknown something rather like the bark of a dog and the hoot of an owl.

They eventually saw what they had heard, a bird previously unknown to science, an Antpitta species. This type hops about the floor of the forest, feeding on bugs. A white facial stripe distinguishes the new species, not similar in its markings to known birds.

Having come within fifty feet of this novel Antpitta, they recorded its song and played it. In response, "the bird came crashing right back in front of me, right in the undergrowth," revealed Ridgely.

Soon these "new" birds were photographed and captured using nets. The Academy of Natural Sciences announced their existence on June 11, 1998.

Source: Austin American-Statesman, 6/14/98

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